Tuesday, May 31, 2011

We Haven't Run Out of Heroes

This is not the type of story that the legacy media would embrace, but columnist Bob Lonsberry ran with it:


(This column was written in January, 2010. Yesterday [30 May 2011], at the post office in Hornell, they dedicated a stone which will memorialize this young Marine. My family and I had the honor of being in attendance.)

HORNELL, NY – I spent two hours last night in the cold outside Dagon Funeral Home. There were three or four hundred people ahead of me, two retired schoolteachers behind me, and a congressman about a dozen people back.

When I left, in the cold dark, the line still stretched out the front door, left down the sidewalk, around the corner, and back for two blocks.

That’s how it is when a hero dies.

That’s how it is when a small town loses its first such hero. The first since Vietnam.

Lance Corporal Zack Smith was 19.

His high school sweetheart will be a widow on their first anniversary.

And the price of freedom will never be clearer than it was last night in the cold.

The pictures inside showed a young man who could be a model of what a young American man should be. Strong, robust, smiling, obviously full of joy. Ready to tackle the world and whatever it had to offer. In a football uniform, on the golf course, in the arms of his family, in the arms of his bride. In the uniform of the United States Marine Corps. You felt a shiver as you saw and thought.

This is the fruit of America, this is the best we produce, this is the salt of the earth and the foundation of the future. This is what was lost in the south of Afghanistan in the fight to keep the war over there and the peace over here.

On January 31 an explosive went off and three Marines were dead. Eight years at war and thousands lost and this is the price you pay.

Only the odds are you don’t pay it. And neither do I. Odds are it is paid by all-American families from every corner of this country, mothers and fathers and sisters and brothers. Hearts broken, dreams shattered, loves lost.

He was a great kid, a good son, an American patriot....

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